In-Country Support


The GEC provides in-country coordination and information management support through a variety of options, including the GEC Rapid Response Team (RRT). For further details on in-country support options, please contact the Global Cluster Coordinators, Maria Agnese Giordano and Tyler Arnot.

In 2017, the GEC team spent 92 weeks providing in-country support in 8 countries.

Map of GEC operations 2017

Frequently Asked Questions on RRTs (click to see the answers)

What is the Education Cluster Rapid Response Team?

The Education Cluster Rapid Response Team is a group of education in emergencies experts who are rapidly deployable to support education coordination in humanitarian situations. The Rapid Response Team members are deployed to UNICEF or Save the Children hosts at the country level, at a minimum of 48 hours notice. The RRT can support:

  • Coordination at national and sub-national levels; establishing or leading Education Clusters and liaising with cluster partners, Ministries of Education, OCHA and other UN agencies and NGOs, with first priority given to large scale sudden onset emergencies (L-3).
  • Management of inter-agency assessments; focusing on sudden-onset needs assessment, but also assessment in slow-onset or chronic emergencies.
  • Technical assistance in the area of information management; supporting Education Clusters with the  development of IM systems and tools, training on IM issues, website development and more.

The deployment of the Rapid Response Team is arranged through existing standby agreements managed by UNICEF and Save the Children.

Who can request RRT staff?

The RRT can provide dedicated surge capacity to any Save the Children or UNICEF Country Office taking on the role of Education Cluster lead, co-lead or provision of information management capacity in a national or sub-national cluster.

The cluster coordination or education staff in country can contact the global Education Cluster to request RRT support. Once there is agreement on need for RRT support, focus of the assignment and timing, UNICEF or Save the Children country offices make a formal request. In the case of RRT staff deployable via UNICEF, the request is made to UNICEF EMOPS using established stand-by procedures. In the case or RRT staff deployable via Save the Children, the request is directed to the Save the Children Education Cluster Coordinator.

How long can RRT staff be deployed for?

RRT personnel are deployable for a period of up to 12 weeks. RRT personnel are not intended to replace permanent or temporary emergency staff, but are available when additional surge capacity is required due to a sudden onset emergency or an intensification of needs in slow onset or chronic crises.

What are the costs associated with a deployment?

All assignment related costs, such as travel and accommodation are covered by the RRT hosting organizations.

Does a contract need to be issued?

No contract needs to be issued, although ToRs must be provided with the initial request, and the RRT personnel must be fully accommodated within in the hosting Country Operation (Official ID card; assigned supervisor; included in the organizational chart and security arrangements; induction briefings; necessary equipment and transportation). A generic ToR is available in order to facilitate the development of more specific ToRs – download here.


Are RRT personnel UNICEF or Save the Children staff?

RRT personnel are employed by their organisations (currently Save the Children, Finn Church Aid and Norwegian Refugee Council). Finn Church Aid and NRC RRT staff are deployed through standby arrangements with UNICEF. The Save the Children RRT staff is deployed by Save the Children International


What about support for my organisation’s own emergency education response programming?

The RRT is not intended for agency specific interventions. Support for an agencies’ own response can be sought from regional advisors or headquarters staff, depending on your organisation’s emergency surge protocol and procedures. RRTs do not act as UNICEF or Save the Children emergency response staff, they do not work on agency specific programming and are only deployable to clusters or education in emergencies multi agency coordination groups.

Who to contact?

If you would like to know more about the services the Rapid Response Team can provide or would like to request a deployment, please contact the Global Cluster Coordinators, Maria Agnese Giordano and Tyler Arnot.


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